- 23 June, 2016:
To mark the World Hydrography Day which is celebrated on 21st
June every year, the Ministry of Housing and Lands organised yesterday an open day and an exhibition at the Digital Gate, Port Louis Waterfront.
The theme chosen this year by the International Hydrographic Organisation is: Hydrography-the key to well-managed seas and waterways. The objective is to focus attention on the fundamental importance of hydrography and the knowledge of the shape, nature and depth of the seafloor as a fundamental requirement for the proper, safe, sustainable and cost effective use of the world’s seas, oceans and waterways.
This year’s theme also aims at enabling all stakeholders involved in hydrography to highlight the significance and importance of their activities which comprise a wide array of activities ranging from support of safety navigation; protection of the marine environment; coastal zone management; marine spatial data infrastructures to defence; resource exploration and all other components of the blue economy.
In his opening address, the Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Housing and Lands, Mr Showkutally Soodhun, expressed his gratitude towards the Republic of India for helping Mauritius to progress in the field of Hydrography and also in the setting up of a full-fledged Hydrographic Unit which is presently headed by a Lieutenant Commander from the Republic of India.
Referring to the objective of the country which is to develop a national spatial data infrastructure and tap the economic resources of the blue economy, Mr Soodun outlined that Mauritius is bound to move further in the field of hydrography for the economic and touristic development of the country at both national and international level.
He lauded the efforts of the Hydrographic Unit which has obtained recognition from the Commonwealth Association for Public Administration and Management following the submission made for the International Innovations Awards and which has been retained for semi-final stage.
Since 2006, the Indian authorities and the team serving the Hydrographic Unit have carried out 27 hydrographic surveys in our waters at the request of the Ministry of Housing and Lands. Charts for Agalega Island, Port Louis and Approaches to Port Louis, approaches to Cargados Carajos shoals, Port Mathurin Harbour and approaches to Port Mathurin Harbour, Grand Bay and Grande Rivière Noire Bay have also been produced.
In 2005 Mauritius signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Hydrography with the Republic of India which has been further extended for a period of five years in 2015.
At the inauguration ceremony the Vice-Prime Minister handed over to the Acting High Commissioner of India, Mr. Ashok Kumar, the High Waterline Delineation Fair Sheet of mainland Mauritius which is the result of a detailed survey completed by the Hydrography Unit.